The Stories Behind Horns

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by BrassBandMajor, Mar 3, 2016.

  1. cb5270

    cb5270 Pianissimo User

    Jul 20, 2013
    Rowuk, do you have any personal history with Schenectady, NY? I was born there in '40 and grew up out side the city toward Albany. My dad worked at ALCO. In 1954 he bought my Mt Vernon Bach Strad (16466) for $350 and my Olds Ambassador at Hermie's Music in Schenectady. Big bucks for him in that time. I am playing that horn again after 50 years away from music.
  2. Sethoflagos

    Sethoflagos Utimate User

    Aug 7, 2013
    Lagos, Nigeria
    Small world. Done a fair bit of work with GE Schenectady in the past. Though since the merger with Nuovo-Pignone, the occasional visits are now to Florence. Which is okay for a change of scenery :-)
  3. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    I grew up in the Helderbergs on the hill above Altamont. Thatcher Park, Indian Ladder Trail, Knox, Berne.

  4. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    My dad was a methods specialist/engineer in the Steam Turbine division. Even after his retirement, they sent him around the world to fix things that the "young dynamics" broke...
  5. ExtraTeeth

    ExtraTeeth Pianissimo User

    Nov 13, 2008
    Perth, Western Australia
    I have a rotary valve cornet J.H. Zimmermann, Leipzig. It seems to be a model 5862 (from the 1914 catalogue on Horn-U-Copia).
    It was acquired by a released POW at the end of WW1. He was on the S.S. Minnetonka which was torpedoed off Malta in January 1918 and was one of 9 survivors and was held in the POW camp at Karlsruhe.
    It seems that detained merchant seamen weren't repatriated at the end of the war and were simply released and were left to their own devices.
    It is at this point that the cornet was acquired by a swap for some tobacco and taken back to the UK where it sat in a trunk of memorabilia for 90 years. No one in the family had ever been a musician so it remained unplayed in all that time.
    The cornet came to me by auction when the grand daughter of the seaman needed the space and sold off the contents of the trunk.
    The cornet is complete, even with the remains of the original cork buffers on the rotor mechanism. Something nasty has happened to the top of the 3rd valve rotor although the rotor turns ok.
    All slides are firmly stuck. It has the original mouthpiece which is engraved J.H. Zimmermann.
    The question is to restore to playing condition or leave it be in my display cabinet?
    gunshowtickets likes this.
  6. Dalecon

    Dalecon New Friend

    Feb 26, 2016
    Keep the stories coming guys, these are so cool to read.
  7. Dale Proctor

    Dale Proctor Utimate User

    Jul 20, 2006
    Heart of Dixie
    My 1890 Besson cornet was recently listed by the Galpin Society (UK) in the "Journal of surviving 19th-century F. Besson and Besson & Co London-stamped brass instruments, with archival and catalogue data". :-)

    Stamped on bell “50 MEDALS OF HONOUR” / monogram FB / “F. BESSON / ``Prototype'' / 198 EUSTON ROAD / LONDON” / star / “C. Fischer / 6 4th Av. N.Y. / SOLE AGENT U. STATES”.
    According to the firm's archives [Besson stock books], the instrument was “n/ Etoile”; sold 31 Dec 1890 to “Fisher” [sic]; it was part of a batch of 12 (46290-301) and was numbered no later than 31 Dec 1890.
    [ Private collection ]

    Historical documentation is nice to have on a horn that old. However, I have no idea of its history after it was sold by Carl Fischer Music.

  8. gunshowtickets

    gunshowtickets Forte User

    Mar 11, 2015
    Tidewater, VA
    Well, I have also this Buescher 244 LP Custom Built Aristocrat. I stumbled upon it by accident. Two days before I got married, I decided to stop in at the sole music store in town. I've been in there once to buy a Marine Band harmonica five years ago and that's it.
    Being as this town is a very large retirement community, I went in and inquired if they had any old trumpets or cornets people may have put on consignment.
    Luckily, the owner's son remembered a horn they'd taken in at the beginning of the summer and hoping to have cleaned up in the owner's spare time, as the owner also does the instrument repair.
    He said he'd get it done in a couple of days, which turned into a week, but I couldn't complain at the price.
    The case looks to have taken a beating a few years back and forth to high school, the horn put away for half a century (as evidenced by the amount of crud at its first cleanup), and here I've got it. It had a wrinkle at the front bell brace (tactfully removed by the tech), probably from being sat on, the lacquer was 99% intact, and that's about it.

    The case was a veritable time capsule. A Christmas card signed
    "To Carolyn, a little something to go with your sweater, Love, George"
    which is kind of weird; both keys to the case locks in a small manila envelope; an almost new and unused vintage H&B stonelined straight mute; the 88D Duo Cup, which Tom (VetPsychWars) was kind enough to point out was not a good match for the horn and sent me a lovely Giardinelli that works so much better; and a couple of cornet solos/ duets
    Now I look at them, i'm wondering exactly how old the music is. They're Century Music Publications, I can't find copyright dates and one has "...not for sale in British Empire..."
    Leybach "Fifth Nocturne" and Labitzky "Dream of the Shepherdess", both in solo and duet for Bb Cornet with piano accompaniment.
  9. Mellophone Man

    Mellophone Man Pianissimo User

    Mar 31, 2010
    Scottsdale AZ
    My one and only trumpet, that have been playing since 1959, is an Olds French Model serial number 5672. It originally belonged to my great uncle Merwyn Bogue, who gave it to my father in the late 1930's. My father played it in high school, then gave it to me. I started playing the horn in fifth grade and still play it daily. My great uncle Merwyn played trumpet in and was the business manager of the Kay Kyser Orchestra. He performed under the stage name Ish Kabibble.
  10. jdltrumpet

    jdltrumpet Pianissimo User

    Nov 24, 2016
    I just got this funny image in my mind, "messing with a Strad is like messing with Sasquach!" :)

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